PONTE VEDRA, Fla. — Space Systems/Loral (SSL) will build the tri-band Star One D1 telecommunications satellite for Brazil’s commercial satellite fleet operator, Star One, under a contract announced Aug. 15 by SSL.

Palo Alto, Calif.-based SSL’s corporate parent, MDA Corp. of Canada, had told investors in July that it had won a contract for an undisclosed customer to provide television and broadband services to rural regions. Star One is that customer.

Brazil in recent months has been the focus of an extraordinary attention on the part of global satellite fleet operators and satellite builders. The government is embarking on an ambitious space program that is tied in part to the 2016 Olympic Games to take place in Rio de Janeiro.

SSL, which recently lost out to Thales Alenia Space of France and Italy for a contract to provide civil and military telecommunications satellite to the Brazilian government, said Star One D1 will carry a payload of C-, Ku- and Ka-band transponders. Star One D1 is scheduled for launch in early 2016 into a Star One slot at 84 degrees west longitude.

Star One operates a fleet of seven in-orbit satellites and has been one of the fastest growing commercial fleet operators in recent years.

“We are glad to announce this new satellite and to increase our presence not only in Brazil but in all Latin America´s region,” said Gustavo Silbert, president of Star One. “The D1 will help transform the lives of many people in Latin America who currently do not have access to the high speed communications necessary for both economic and social well-being.”

Peter B. de Selding was the Paris Bureau Chief for SpaceNews.